“Spartans ready your breakfast and eat hearty, for tonight we dine in hell!”
My Spartan race experience was so freaking amazing. There is so much to tell but there is no way I could tell you everything, this would become a novel. So I’ll give you the detailed highlights.
I was initially supposed to race with some ladies but that didn’t work out so I put on my Greek panties and went solo. I wasn’t even really nervous because I knew things would work out perfectly for me. And guess what? They did. I had not been there 5 minutes and met Howard, aka Mr. Kinky, who would become one of my race buddies. We hit it off from hello. Within 10 mins we had nicknames for each other. And within 12 minutes “Our” girlfriend had joined us and it was on and popping from there. They were team Chaos and are also members of Georgia Obstacle Racers and Mud Runners, or GORMR. They were largest group represented there. They were the coolest of cool.
Okay so get this, I had to jump/climb/crawl over a 6-7′ wall just to get to the start line. I’m walking around that area wondering how the hell do I get in? When the volunteer says you have to go over. (Humm maybe I was wondering out loud, lol) I asked, are you serious? She said yep! So that’s when I got my first, bruise, LMAO. So we got the Spartan speech which ended with “Look at the Spartan to your left. Now look at the Spartan to your right you will draw strength from them and they from you. They will not let you fail! Truer words have never been spoken. And a chant, Who are you? Answer, I AM A SPARTAN!! With that we were off. .01 mile in, the first obstacle, a mud moat…white sneakers became Georgia clay red. Then there were hurdles 6′, 8′ and 9′ maybe. We did them as a team. 2 out of 25+ DONE 🙂
The one that I’ll never forget, would be that damn red bucket that they made me fill with rocks and carry it 1/4 mile up hill! The bastard Persians, I know Xerxes, was behind that. (rolling my eyes at him) I know that bucket had to weigh at least 75lbs. I did fine for the first 1-2 minutes but then…I was done. I started pulling, dragging, and praying. It was then my Spartan guardian angel showed up. I put my bucket down and he picked it gave my some carrying techniques and cheered me on. I had never seen this man before. I walked about another 50 yards and my back started hurting. I had to put the bucket down, again. And there was Zack ( I later learned his name) He gave me some sort of back rub and chile, I almost wanted to kiss him. At first I was like whoa, whatcha doing back there? Then I was like, whoa, yeah that’s it! LMAO. He said, “See, I got ya.” He picked my bucket up again gave me more guidance and I was off again. When I finally made to the dump spot, they were asking us to dump on a higher end, which meant I was going to have to lift that heavy ass bucket over my head and over the ledge into the dump area. I’m thinking damn really? No way. And there was my Spartan, he dumped my bucket for me and gave me the biggest hug and whispered words of encouragement to me and sent me on my way. That was an awful challenge yet a beautiful challenge.
The mud pits, the MUD PITS the ROLING MUD PITS. (Is that what Adel meant when she sang Rolling in the Deep?) The muddy clay was slippery, and the water was freezing. My feet sank to shin deep and I had to battle the slopes for my sneakers. And battle the cold water for my breath. So when I slid into the first pit, and the cold water hit my body I almost went into shock. SN: If you have ever seen the Movie Sugar Hill with Wesley Snipes, the last hit his father took that killed him he began to say whoo, whoo, whoo. Yeah that’s how I was doing it. If not, how about jumping into a cold pool, filled with ice. There were four pits back to back. Each a little deeper that the preceding one and colder, if that’s possible. I went from waist deep to nipple deep by the time I exited the 4 pit. Did I mention the drop off in pit 3? Yeah there was a drop-off. Oh to be 5’3″, smh. Dory from Finding Nemo came to mind, “Just keep walking, just keep walking.”
Then there was a cargo net hanging from a cliff that was as high as the Statue of Liberty. You had to use a rope that was dangling from the cargo net to get to the cargo net. But it wasn’t bad. It was actually one of the easier challenges. I enjoyed that one. I’m sure I looked like Spiderwoman on that one.
“No retreat, no surrender, that is Spartan law.”
The Tarzan swing was the hardest thing for me to do. We had to grab a rope and swing over a, say it with me now, a mud moat! I must have stood there 10 minutes trying to get the nerve to do it. Lawd have mercy, I was all Jane, honey waiting for Tarzan to show up so I could hitch a ride on his back. Hell even Cheetah would have sufficed. Of course the people around me were giving me tips and cheering me on. My race buddy was standing next to me trying to get up the nerve as well. She eventually took the burpee penalty. But I knew I had to do this. That was my goal complete every challenge. And it Spartan law. So I closed my eyes, held on tight and swung….right into the mud moat, LOL. But, I tried. Maybe had I kept my eyes open I could have made it to the other side without yet another cold mud bath. SN: Does anyone know if Georgia red clay is good for your hair or skin? I’m sure there is some around here somewhere.
I carried sandbags up ungodly, unforgiving small mountains, I hoisted 80lb sandbags 2 stories in the air. It was about this time someone with a megaphone began to yell out my name. “Denna? Denna is that you? ” I initially thought I was hearing things but then the person started walking towards me without outstretched arms. And she said I was looking for you. I’m so glad I saw you.” Total shock on my part. Turns out she was a friend of a friend who I had met a few months ago. Never expected that. You know who is watching or where. I carried a 60lb Atlas ball 20 yards did 5 burpees and took it back 20 yards. I completed a memory challenge, you had to read the directions that were upside down. You had to read 1 word and 7 numbers and commit them to memory and provide it when asked later in the race (which was about 10 obstacles and 1 hour later) I still remember it MIKE 384 7893. AROO!
I climbed an inverted wall that was about 10 feet high and had to belly slide down the other side. I made a clean spot on the plywood (O_O). I traversed 3 walls with someone’s hand on my ass for 2 walls. No worries, I returned the favor and groped her ass for 2.5 walls. Matter of fact, I touched a LOT of foreign ass on Saturday, LOL. And there were more than a few hands on mine. I climbed a 10, 12, 15 foot wall with help of my race buddy Howard. God bless Howard, I stepped on that mans quads, cupped hands, and shoulder and possibly his ear, just to name a few of the parts. Lord if it were not for him, I know I’d still have 5 more obstacles to go, right now lol.
I crossed monkey bars, all but riding Laura’s shoulders. There were cargo nets several stories high. I threw a spear, after all I am a SPARTAN. I climbed a rope that was suspended about 2 stories high, well I got to the attic, of the first story, lol. My arms were done and the I was muddy and the rope was wet and muddy. Did I mention I had to go chest deep in yet another, muddy ice bath to get to the rope? Yep they were suspended in the middle of a huge mud pit. That had to be the Persians again.
I low crawled about 100+ yards through puddles that threatened to drown me, mud so thick I was losing my pants all this, under varying levels of barbed wire suspended mere inches above me, only to reach a mountain of mud that was nearly impossible to climb. There was nothing to grip, nothing to get your footing on. And once at the top I realized that oh, now I have to slide into this mud hole that is abdomen deep on this tall lady, so that means it’s drowning level for me. There was a huge board dividing it lengthwise. It rises about 7 -8 feet out of the water and disappears below the surface of the water. They tell me I have to swim under. Wait, say what now? How wide is this thing, how far does it extend into the water? Damn! They say it’s 4 inches wide and only about 6 inches into the water. I give them the you better not be shitting me look and check. They seem to be correct. I look at my race buddy and say, I’m just going to do it. She said, “Really?” Yep, I’m just going to do it and get it over with. I’ve come to far to be stopped by a bit of muddy water. Hell I am muddy water at this point. And with that I disappeared under the water. I resurfaced to cheers and applause. Now, I’m literally soaked from head to toe and covered in mud from head to toe. From there, there was another football field of low crawling under barbed wire. Oh yeah, then onto the Slip Wall. That was a bitch! The wall was at an angle wet, covered with mud and they want you to go up and over. Fortunately I made it over the first time, no back sliding (or belly sliding). I think my toes came out of the bottom of my sneakers and just dug in and held on. What else could have happened? Everyone wasn’t so lucky.
There were several other obstacle to complete before completing the challenge. I honestly can’t remember them. I do remember the final mud moat that was waist deep, I waded through that and then I could feel the warmth of the fire! I had done it! I had complete every single challenge they threw at me, all that was left was to jump the fire. I did it. And I did to applause cheers and whistles. What an awesome feeling. And when they placed my medal around my neck I felt like a real Spartan, Leonidas would have been proud, AROO!!
I can’t wait to add my super medal, to go along with my sprint and finally complete the set with the beast medal. Super proud of myself for completing this race.
The video shows what I saw the following day as I volunteered, as well as few stills of my muddy self. I was thinking to myself, wow you did that! Hey you did that as well. As I watched many many people do the challenges I could just feel the pride swell within me. I was just so proud of myself.